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Go online and search for “Meal Replacement Shake” on Google and you’ll get about 10,400,000 results. How about walking through any health store, your local grocery store, convenience store or gas station, even your local pharmacy you’re going to see at least one shelf filled protein powders, weight loss powders or smoothies promising they are healthy and can get your the results you are wanting for your nutrition. While there are a few that come close to being all natural and healthy for you many of them FALL SHORT and odds are have the same ingredients that are linked to weight gain, cravings and preventative disease.The last half century has seen a steady increase in the incidence and prevalence of chronic inflammatory diseases with further increases expected as more GMO ingredient filled products are introduced into the market and these ingredients are what’s filling our shelves and online products everywhere.In this series I will be dissecting the ingredients of these products that I have seen out in the market that be found gyms, health food stores, local grocery stores and gas stations. I am writing these not to bash these products but to help YOU become aware of what’s truly going into those “healthy” alternatives that is highly advertised as a healthy shake, protein or energy drink.
I am not a nutritionist or personal trainer, I am coach that has done extensive research on the ingredients of products I was at one time drinking or interested in drinking. But in 2010 when I was diagnosed with an Auto-Immune disease I discovered many of the foods I was eating or considering eating were actually the cause of the autoimmune disease coming out of remission and showing it’s ugly face. It didn’t happen over night. It happened over years and years of abuse from ingredients that are deemed safe by the FDA but actually can create disorders or worse death. These shakes, meal replacements, energy drinks were also adding to my constant weight struggles from my teenage years to my early 40’s and it was time to stop putting such ingredients in my body.
I also don’t want to see more people harming their bodies more than they already have and being taken advantage of my some company that clearly identifies their bottom line of making money as more important than the health of their customers.
The #1 doctor-recommended brand, Ensure Original provides complete, balanced nutrition. It’s marketed to help people take in each of the vitamins and minerals they need for good health. Makers claim the product doctors recommend it for individuals with nutritional deficiencies or those with certain health conditions, which I have been in front of a Doctor that has recommended to an aging family member of mine. When I asked about the processing and side effects associated with some of the ingredients especially corn starch and Sucralose. They immediately walked away. Yes- people suffering from conditions of wasting- including patients post chemo/radiation and people recovering from intestinal surgeries due to inflammatory bowel disease. The reality is that they are recommending a food that contains an additive that is directly linked to the very diseases for which they are suffering. That just sounds ridiculous. Let’s breakdown some of the ingredients that are of concern.
- Corn Maltodextrin. Maltodextrin is an artificial sugar that has a mild, sweet taste. Maltodextrin is also known as a polysaccharide and manufacturers create this artificial sugar by applying acids or other enzymes to cornstarch. What is cornstarch? Cornstarch is essentially a highly PROCESSED carbohydrate. It packs about 30 calories or 7 grams of carbohydrate per tablespoon. There’s no protein, fat, vitamins, minerals or fiber. It is highly processed and basically different name given to hide ingredients that either contain Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) or form MSG during processing.
- Soy Oil and Soy Protein Isolate. The very first ingredient is this Denatured GMO protein. Numerous artificial flavorings, particularly MSG, are added to soy protein isolate. Most Soy in America is processed and not 100% natural. Which in fact Soy is not bad for you but it’s the processed soy that is and guaranteed this Soy is processed.
- Natural & Artificial Flavor. Follow these links to get the story on artificial flavoring. Honestly, please avoid them at all cost!!! There is nothing natural about Natural Flavoring. Natural Flavoring and Artificial Flavoring
- Sucromalt. This is a new one for me and it sure did raise an eyebrow when I started to research it. Sucromalt a novel carbohydrate that is similar to sucrose and high fructose corn syrup, has a slow carbohydrate release that provides a steady source of energy. Though studies show it can help lower glycemic and insulinemic response in the body for Type 2 Diabotes suffers. Let’s see what it is exacly made of. Sucromalt is manufactured from the raw materials, sucrose and maltose (or high-maltose corn syrup), mixed in a ratio of 8:1 to 11:1 at a total aqueous concentration of 40 to 50%, before adding the enzyme alternansucrase. The enzyme is produced from a strain of Leuconostoc citreum or a recombinant strain of Bacillus licheniformis. There’s that corn syrup again, high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) accounts for as much as 40% of caloric sweeteners used in the United States. Some studies have shown that short-term access to HFCS can cause increased body weight. This is a clrealy a new ingredient developed by Cargill and though studies have shown no side effects in the initial studdies to go to market as a food additive. I am not buying it. It again is processed and clearly processed ingredients ranks a top of my “Do Not Comsume List”.
- Carrageenan. Although derived from a natural source, carrageenan appears to be particularly destructive to the digestive system, triggering an immune response similar to that your body has when invaded by pathogens like Salmonella. The result: “Carrageenan predictably causes inflammation, which can lead to ulcerations and bleeding,” explains veteran carrageenan researcher Joanne Tobacman, MD, associate professor of clinical medicine at the University of Illinois School of Medicine at Chicago. Carrageenan, which has no nutritional value, has been used as a thickener and emulsifier to improve the texture of ice cream, yogurt, cottage cheese, soy milk and other processed foods. some animal studies had linked degraded forms of it (the type not used in food) to ulcerations and cancers of the gastrointestinal tract. But around that time, a prominent researcher in the field, Joanne K. Tobacman, M.D., now associate professor of clinical medicine at the University of Illinois College of Medicine,
conducted studies linking undegraded carrageenan – the type that is widely used in foods – with malignancies and other stomach problems.
- Liquid Sucralose. Sucralose is a synthetic additive created by chlorinating sugar. The chemical structure of the chlorine is almost the same of that in pesticide DDT and there are numerous side effect associated with Sucralose such as headaches, stomach issues, skin rashes and muscle aches. I only have 2 words for Sucralose “STAY AWAY!!!” This one ingredient is sabotaging your health. Shane “The People’s Chemist” Ellison of Hotze Health & Wellness Center says if you could make one simple change in your diet to help you melt fat, sleep better, and improve your memory … wouldn’t you do it? What if that same simple dietary change could increase your energy, conquer depression, save your eyesight, restore your mental alertness, get your bedroom energy rockin’, and increase your lifespan? Research Shows Splenda And Sucralose Have Extremely Harmful Effects on Humans and more and more studies have made it very clear the potential for disturbing side effects from the ingestion of artificial sweeteners.
Honestly, WHY? Why drink this? If this is ever recommended to me from by my Doctor in my later years I will refuse to comply with his/her request. Why would I want to put such a highly processed item into my body where the ingredients can clearly be linked to health complications.
I prefer my Shakeology and have 1 everyday. Why Shakeology? Look at the label and ask yourself what those ingredients are? Here’s a clue. They are WHOLE FOODS that humans have been eating for 1000’s of years and are linked to helping the human body function better.
THERE IS NO MAGIC PILL OR POWDER THAT CAN TAKE THE WEIGHT OFF! But it can come off easier with WHOLE FOOD and daily exercise. It comes off with hard work, behavior modification, and patience. Any program that promises you instant results may cause you to initially lose a few pounds, but as time goes on you’ll gain the weight back and only end up losing money.Again the choice is up to you. If you do not wish to use Shakeology in your plans to lose weight, then that’s ok. Beachbody coaches are not here to “push” products. We inform you of what we have available which has helped us and may help you. You make the choice that best suits your lifestyle and goals. I may be contacted here with any further questions.
The National Center for Biotechnology Information
If so please comment below and I will add more like it. Thank you for stopping by Duffitness, your Beachbody Coach. Not only did Beachbody help me lose weight and live healthier but it’s helped me in all aspects of my life. Thank you for reading, Chris Duffield.